tv Morning Joe MSNBC April 14, 2011 6:00am-9:00am EDT
wealthiest americans. i say at a time when the tax burden on the wealthy is at its lowest level in half a century the most fortunate among us can afford to pay a little more. most wealthy americans would agree with to give back to thei country. a country that's done so much for them. it's just washington hasn't asked them to. >> good morning. it is thursday, april 14th and look at that shot of new york city. >> beautiful, beautiful. >> i think the sunlight came out today. that would be nice. on set, we have senior analyst mark halperin and the director of the earth institute columbia university, dr. jeffrey sachs. >> and andy serwer with us from
"fortune" magazine. >> he's for himself. >> the president wants to trim 4 trillion over 12 years. here we dgo. >> here we go, mika. watching the president throw his first punches and paul ryan on the other side, where are we in this battle? then i go back to those great -- you're too young to remember this but these guys aren't. great cosell interviews between mohammed and joe frazier. we're not in the first round, where ali is yapping and saying he will do this and frazier on the other -- right now, this is -- you talk about silly season, this is silly season. mark halperin, this was really underlined by some shocking information that came out last night from the cbo about this great budget bill that was going to save $38 billion this year. it saves 1% of that.
>> maybe. >> maybe 1% of that. they're still playing with numbers, these republicans and democrats. silly season. >> when the economics of that are explained to some of these new members of congress, they may not be willing to vote for this package. the 218 votes is not in hand. in terms of the overall debate and the president's finally weighing in, i think -- >> look at that. mika, look at that. >> what we call a discrepancy in washington. >> this is why americans don't trust washington d.c. >> there's a decimal point problem. >> but it's 1%. this is why americans don't trust republicans and they don't trust democrats. everybody comes out and takes victory laps, jeffrey sachs, and says we have cut $38 billion. we have made the tough choices. the deficit is actually reduced only $300 million and we spend
more this year than last year. this the whole thing is bizarre, they announced a historic deal and took days to find out what a line item was. when everything is done so secretly anyway, you can be pretty suspicious we're not hearing the story. it's pretty shocking what that discrepancy is. >> it really is. let me ask you quickly, andy, do you agree right now, you have the republicans saying we will never raise taxes. you can make us eat worms and dirt. you have barack obama on the other side, saying we will raise taxes. they're both saying it's a deal killer when we know they have to meet in the middle and do a deal. >> that's right. it's the beginning of the political season. the budget is topic a. the one thing that actually is encouraging is we're talking about the third rail more much more than we ever did, the entitlement programs. that's a positive. as far as republicans saying
never raise taxes, that didn't work out so well for george bush the elder, did it? >> although, if he misses this opportunity, the president, that would be, i think the worst thing. >> it's going to happen. >> has to happen. >> they will meet in the middle. you look at e-mails and blogosphere and tweets last night. i'm sorry, the blind loyalists on the right and the blind loyalists on the left are talking about how their side is completely right and the other -- there was one statement i heard last night that gave me a reason to be hopeful. >> what was that? >> pete peterson, a guy who's been -- pete peterson has been talking about the deficit debt for a long time, he said, listen, this is a good start on both sides because like you said, we're now talking about everything, jeffrey, you'd agree, we're talking about everything. >> not so much. >> he's skeptical. >> how much credit should we give ourselves for talking about
everything, it's so disorganized. there hasn't been -- still today, impossible to understand what either side is really talking about, what are the baselines? cuts against what? you read the president's fact sheet yesterday, i couldn't make heads or tails of it. i know these numbers. will cut this or cut this but didn't give us any lines what are they cutting? what are the numbers. what percent of national income. >> all right. >> and the focus is the debt ceiling. there is going to have to be something before the summer and something done about raising the debt ceiling if there is to be substantial progress. >> john boehner getting pummeled by the national review and eric erickson of the red states. a lot of government conservatives have said, strike one, we don't know if we can trust you. i'm telling you, official
washington and financial people need to understand how serious last night was. this moves us much closer to the brink on not increasing the debt limit. i'm telling you, that has now -- you know all those systems, orange, yellow, red, purple, violet, i don't know what the worst one is, red, maybe. if you're on a terror alert system for the debt ceiling. >> here we are. >> it has just gone to red or death come fight now the freshmen don't trust boehner in the leadership and barack obama not trusted by progressives and paul ryan sitting on the front row when the president attacked him pretty hard. >> hit him with the olive branch. >> that is just not what you want to do going into a crisis of this magnitude. >> all right. so let's lay out what happened with the president yesterday, making his case to tackle the nation's spiraling deficit in a
speech at george washington university yesterday, the president proposed chipping away at the debt with a mix of spending cuts and tax hikes. >> in the last decade the income of the bottom working americans actually declined. meanwhile, the top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollar each. that's who needs to pay less taxes? they want to give people like me a $200,000 tax cut that's paid for by asking 33 seniors each to pay $6,000 more in health costs. that's not right and not going to happen as long as i'm president. >> specifically, the president proposes cutting $4 trillion from the nation's debt over12 years, less than his own fiscal
commission recommended. three-quarters from spending cuts and the rest raising taxes on the nation's highest earners and conforming the tax code to close popular loopholes and calling for a $770 billion reduction in discretionary spending, $400 billion in defense spending. >> look at that number right there. >> yep. >> that is significant, a significant number, more significant than secretary gates put out there. >> $700 billion a year is the annual defense budget. >> this is over a decade. >> exactly. >> i somehow wonder -- >> 80 billion from medicare and medicaid. there you go, are the full numbers. ials think what he said was interesting about taxes and highest earners and it not being right. >> jeffrey sachs, what was your take on the overall speech? short on specifics but general themes, what do you think? >> interesting. basically what he said a month ago when he gave the fiscal year
2012 budget, which was completely ignored. the reason that it got some traction, quite a bit of traction yesterday is that it's against the foil of the republican plan. republicans came out saying no taxes on the top and it makes it easy for obama to carry much of the political space. as usual republicans have put themselves in a bad corner they won't be able to get out of because the president is right on this basic point to say never never on taxes is a completely losing proposition. what the rest of the budget means first is hard to know because we don't see clear numbers presented. what the budget was presented a month ago, basically the basis for yesterday's speech, i was more than -- less than lukewarm about, i have to say. it wasn't really getting to core needs for the country, wasn't
really spelling out where the investments need to be made. too much military spending because the wars were still tapering off into several years rather than getting out of afghanistan. i thought that the money wasn't well spent. but compared to the ryan plan, the president's got a winner here, there's no question about it, for the base of the american people. >> let me ask you, mark, economics versus politics. economically, i think most people economically believe if you're going to cut 4 or 5 or $6 trillion from the national debt, you have to let the bush tax cuts expire either for the wealthiest or all americans. politically, jeffrey said economically, that's a loser, politically, is there any evidence that's a losing proposition? >> tax cuts for the wealthy are unp popular and if the president can frame the debate -- >> i still don't understand why
the president didn't follow chuck schumer's advice politically and economically and say, you know what, we will keep $250 to $1 million keep your tax cuts, for millionaires and billionaires taking it back. >> they could have done that before the election. some democrats wanted to. >> i know. >> the democrats were up for re-election, didn't want to talk about tax increases because republicans have been very effective saying now is not the time to raise taxes on the american people. they do an effective job of fuzzing up the politics. >> politically, now, he has it in time for the next election, i guess. i don't see how he doesn't get this. >> i never understood how come you couldn't make a distinction between tax cuts increases between ordinary americans and super wealthy americans. we cut task force the super wealthy bush tax cuts didn't help the economy when bush was president and raised them when clinton was and the economy did
great. there's a very tenuous link between tax cuts and and increases for super wealthy and the economy. it does have a lot to do with the deficit because it does produce a tremendous amount of revenue. >> the president did get political in his speech taking a few veiled shots at paul ryan's budget plan. take a listen. >> this vision is less about reducing the deficit than changing the social compact in america. ronald reagan said there's nothing serious or courageous about this plan. there's nothing serious or courageous about spending a deficit that includes tax cuts of trillionairs for millionaires and billionaires and i don't think there's any anything wrong with asking for a vision i know. it's not like the approach i laid out today. this is a breaks, that's not how -- this is a democracy, that's not how things work.
i'm earring to hear from all ends of the political spectrum. although i'm sure the criticism of what i've said here today will be fierce in some quarters and my critique of the house republican approach has been strong, americans deserve and will demand that we all make an effort to bridge our differences and find common ground. >> mark halperin, if the president believes what he believes, basically, paul ryan's budget shatters the social contracts on america. >> and is un-american. if he believes that he has the right to believe that. i don't understand tactically, why do you invite paul ryan to come sit in this speech, insult him, even though left wing bloggers will be thrilled by it because this is the guy sitting across the table at a negotiations. i'm sorry, this just not was not a smart political play. let him watch in his office and be insulted. don't put him on the fro
front -- i'm not saying this is a republican not saying this is a small government conservative. i'm saying this as a lawyer that negotiated time and time again. any time the two sides get close to insulting each other in public, you pull them apart because you want the deal in the end. i don't understand this. >> i think it's compounded by the fact i'm not sure i agree with you on the first point. i think if a republican president called the democratic proposals un-american, i think the press would be up in arms. >> they would savage it. >> that kind of rhetoric for the president to say what paul ryan is doing is not consistent with his vision of america that's rhetoric that only added injury to the insult of inviting him to sit in the front row. >> republicans have said a lot of really really tough things about barack obama, really tough things. it's not even the words, not the rhetoric, i think the president does believe that the ryan plan is not the america he grew up in or the america that he wants, i'm just saying for negotiating reasons, why invite him to sit
on the front row and say his budget is not serious and it's un-american whether when paul ryan has been fighting his entire life for this? >> i totally agree. it seems like a weird decision for me. >> i don't get it because i think the republicans have said really critical things about the president on camera without him there and that seems actually cowardly. having him in the room looking him straight in the eye talking to him before that to me seems like. >> seriously? >> i'm going to tell you exactly where i stand. i will look you right in the eye. >> put somebody on the front row and insult him in front of the american people. >> no. he's not insulting him. >> basically an un-american plan and i'm serious. you can say you disagree with the direction of paul ryan's plan and cannot say he is not a serious person unless you are a left wing ideologue detached from reality. paul ryan's plan, there are a lot of things in it that concern me. i'm not in love with that plan.
i like that he put everything on the table. i'm saying as a negotiator, this doesn't seem to make sense. >> we ought to hear his reaction. >> i don't understand the calculus. maybe he just wanted to be tough, just be tough and appeal to the base and say, you're going to be dealing with me. >> i think that's exactly what people have been calling for, actually. >> inviting people over and insulting people. >> i don't think it was insulting. >> that was a stupid political move, mika, you know it was a stupid political move. he was playing to his base. actually, i know this is sort of washington -- >> really? >> sort of backwards, but i think what's happened is this is -- this is the president playing to his base because he knows he's going to end up negotiating with ryan. i just don't think it's a smart thing to do. i don't know. maybe we should invite people into our office an just insult them. >> or on the show. >> or on the show. >> how about that? >> that would be great. let's do that. with people watching.
>> yeah. >> we'll talk about this a little more. coming up next, "politico"'s top stories of the morning including the one person noticeably absent from the budget negotiations. >> joe biden? >> also, we talk to the new chair woman of the democratic national committee, debbie wasserman-schultz and governor bob mcdonnell. [ male announcer ] surprisingly priced at $15,995, the 2011 jetta has arrived. discover german engineering and premium style on the jetta s with best-in-class rear legroom, as well as no-charge scheduled carefree maintenance, all standard. that's great for the price of good. hurry in, and for a limited time while they last get a 2011 jetta for $179 a month. visit vwdealer.com today.
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thank you. and that's just the first quarter. so you want a slide in your office ? or monkey bars, either one. more small businesses choose verizon wireless than any other wireless carrier. where's susie ? is she expecting you ? because they know the small business with the best technology rules. when i starred, i thought he was probably born in this country and now have a much bigger doubt than before. have people studying it and cannot believe what they're finding. >> you have people searching in hawaii? >> absolutely. they cannot believe what they're finding. >> i will give you my impression of one of trump's paid birth certificate researchers in hawaii.
>> yeah, donald, you won't believe the [ bleep ] i'm finding, yeah. yeah, i'm knee-deep in paperwork. holy, look at that a -- that is unbelievable. it will take another two months. i will need more money and maybe i don't know, quaaludes. >> the president spoke at 1:30 this afternoon, which apparently is right in the middle of the vice president's naptime. here's joe biden sleeping. remember how excited everyone used to get when obama spoke? the woman behind him might be dead. look at her. what's going on? i don't even really know if that's a woman. he's having a sex dream, be quiet. oh, he's up. he woke up when he heard you're on your own, and then right back
to sleep. >> oh, my. okay. 21 past the hour. time now to take a look at the morning papers, we'll start with the financial times. the report released late yesterday by senate investigators puts a new spotlight on goldman sachs and the role it played in the financial crisis. senator paul levin who heads the panel said goldman clearly misled their clients and misled congress. he also said the matter was being transferred to the justice department for possible criminal investigation. later in the show, we will talk to author william cohan, how goldman sachs came to rule the world. the tablet revolution is taking a bite out of personal computer sales which suffered market-wide first quarter declines. pc sales were forecasting a 3% growth. california governor jerry brown is standing by a campaign pledge to have voters go to the
polls to approve any tax increases, this despite fierce republican opposition. brown said there are only two options, supporting tax extensions or more severe cuts in state spending. he calls any other plan to close the budget delusional. speaking of delusional -- bob riley -- stop it. bob riley. we won't have that segway -- we won't have that -- >> i've had quite an education lately. >> what's that? >> bob riley tried that in alabama. his first year in, he said we need education money, we have to get it through cuts or taxes. and his tax ref ren dumb was killed and he went back and did it another way. i think that's what jerry brown is doing out in california. it is such a mess, that state fiscally. >> i know. >> an absolute mess. >> speaking of a mess. >> you know who else is a mess.
>> a total mess. >> jim vandehei. >> i'm honored to be here. >> we were talking before we couldn't believe the president had paul ryan on the front row and went after his budget. also, i'm even more shocked what john boehner did. this budget plan, he said we cut $38 billion, gotten really tough and it ends up cbo says, you're going to cut like 1% of that this year. >> in washington d.c., if you don't cut it this year, it gets put back into the budget next year. it was $38 million instead of the billions. what does that do to the republican leadership. >> he's getting pounded. you heard it from pawlenty and national review overnight and members of congress. it's a little more complicated. that number is pun 9 the six
year period partly base republicans said they want more defense spending in the short term. some is locked and will be a new bait line. >> budget things change every year. mark, i can say i'm going to cut $38 billion over the next 10 years. it never happens. like all of barack obama's cuts for even this budget plan start after his re-election. >> but washington has changed a little bit. we've done away with earmarks. as we talked about before there are things on the table never been on the table before. in the short term, this is a real problem for boehner to explain. >> the missing member during the budget talks, nancy pelosi. >> nancy pelosi not anywhere near the figure she was in politics a year ago. in the budget negotiations, democrats and republicans had worked out she would not be part
of them. democrats didn't want her part of the negotiations because they felt her presence would be toxic to getting a deal. in exchange for that, they cut mitch mcconnell in the senate out so they could justify keeping pelosi out of the deal. that speaks to a broader situation for her. she's not as engaged leading the democratic party in the house as steny hoyer is. steny hoyer is this force of democrats because he can control a block of 75 votes in the house that can work with republicans and get deals when you have to get something through a party when republicans have control of it. >> quickly, also in the playbook, alongside working on the budget, the president is working on making money. 3 fund-raisers tonight. >> three fund-raisers in chicago, going to start raising money for his campaign, will be doing that the next 18 months for the campaign, anywhere from $100 so low dollar donors can get in and $1,000 so big dollar
donors can get in. and one of the players from the chicago bulls will be in and a kick-off to raise a billion dollars. money rocks in politics. he will have tons of it and with the exception of romney, i don't know anybody on the other side that can raise that kind of coin. that is a lot of money. >> a lot of money. >> more than your annual salary. >> almost. but more than bush and kerry together raised in 2004. >> again. stunning. >> he has no primary. >> he has no primary. it is stunning that's what it costs to get elected in 2012. >> why he has a big ad. coming up, air traffic controllers sleeping on the job and now the feds are making changes. kobe bryant fined $100,000 over a word he said on the court. we have breaking news. chris licht, what's the breaking news? >>.
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live shot of capitol hill in washington d.c. the sun coming up in washington. welcome back to "morning joe." a quick look at the news. big changes are coming to airports across the nation after the government reported four re air traffic controllers were expected of falling asleep on the job. the latest incident was in nevada, where a plane carrying a sick passenger was forced to lands without clearance from the tower. last month, the faa suspended two controllers in texas for failing to answer radio calls. days ago in washington state, a controller was suspended for sleeping on the job. now the faa says 27 airports
that used to operate with just one controller will now have at least two controllers on duty at all times. while we're on the topic, the transportation security administration or tsa now says it's reviewing passenger screening procedures for young children. it comes amid the backlash from a viral video showing the enhanced pat-down of a 6-year-old girl. congress is now demanding an explanation after the girl's parents expressed outrage. a tsa spokesman insists the screener was doing her job but they say circuit changes to the policy could come this year. members of the business and political world are mourning the death of entrepreneur and "newsweek" executive sidney harman. he died from complications of leukemia. he was the husband of congresswoman jane harman and made his fortune buying highfy dealt sound system s last year.
he was 92 years old. >> he and his partner made their fortune from the stereo business. in 1956, his partner decided to get out of it and he stayed in. >> it worked out pretty well for him. >> and "newsweek" in one of his last big news, took over "newsweek." what does this mean for the future of "newsweek"? >> the family says they will continue to be involved. the question is are they involved passively or actively or passively and congresswoman harman step up and shape "newsweek." >> now to sports. >> not really happy news. the headline in san francis"san chronicle" says this, bonds is guilty of obstruction. the jury convicted the home run leader of giving evasive answers on his steroid usage to the grand jury.
they deadlocked on the more serious counts including the perjury charges but the seven-time mvp is a convicted felon and faces six months in a trial that cost taxpayers $3 million. i think there are three perjury counts still not only deadlocked but may be retried again. the bonds' defense team argued the government's case was based on theory and no way to prove he knowingly took steroids but he could face 18 months behind bars. one angry slur will cost lakers kobe bryant $100,000. bryant used an anti-gay slur in frustration over a referee's call tuesday night. kobe said his words should quote not be taken literally. it's a jon kyl thing. no truth to it. i did not mean. >> makes sense.
>> meant what i said. >> he didn't mean to offend anyone either except maybe the ref he was trying to offend. >> and all kinds of other people. >> and not that there's anything wrong with it. >> well, maybe there is something -- >> and the new editor of "fortune" magazine. >> you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. ♪
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when i was 18 years old in november of 1964, a freshman at georgetown, i first went to time square, i bought a steak at tad's steakhouse. i heard a guy ream his mother out, poor working woman because she had given him a highfi instead of a stereo speaker. i remember everything about it. i saw a hooker approach a man in a gray flannel suit. that's pretty heavy stuff for a guy from arkansas. look, i still have vivid memories of it. romantic, fascinating. 40 past the hour, time to reveal this week's new issue of "fortune" magazine. andy, i love this cover, twoubl twoubl -- trouble at twitter. >> you wonder how things are monetized. are they monetizing it well? what's the future? >> that's the thing.
it's problematic now. amazing, this company is only four years old, striking because it's a part of popular culture. oprah uses it, part of politics, dissidents in your ran and the arab world of used it to plan against the regimes, an amazing thing. on the other hand, it's been in disarray, they've had three ceos in four years and boards fighting each other. >> why? they don't know how to monetize? >> that's part of the problem. they don't know how to monetize and only have $45 million in revenue opposed to over a billion for facebook. what is twitter? is it a social media? >> there is a little bit of confusion there. >> problems there and the other thing is, it's not, when you come down to it, not so easy to use as facebook. your know, facebook people spend every second of everyday trying to make it easy to use and also trying to figure out how to turn it into a business. the twitter people say just let it grow and they let users
really create the system. >> how many people do they have on twitter now? >> they have 200 million accounts but only 20 million active customers right now. there's a big disconnect between the number of accounts and people using it. 20 million is a lot. in four years is a great number of growth. but the growth in the united states has plateau'd and growing overseas tremendously and half of the people are not using it as much as they used to. >> it's in decline in usage? >> it's plateauing. overseas, it's growing. the u.s. market is so important for these types of markets. you have to keep growing and adding people to the network. we use is, halperin, right? >> the only way i know where joe is at any given time. >> exactly. i can see how for news junkies, something you use on a daily basis and part of what you do in terms of gathering information.
how does it translate? >> the twitter people say it's unfair and compared to facebook. they say that's unfair because facebook is for everybody, for your kids, your grandparents, it's like a telephone. this is a more specific niche product. obviously, people in the news and people trying to get information that way can use it. it's not the same thing. there's a lot of people betting a lot of money on it. raised $360 million. those investors will want their money back. we're not saying that this company is dead or anything even close to that. what we're saying the company is kind of in disarray and need to figure out what they will do, how they will make money and what kind of business or product really is this? >> what are they spending that money on? >> they're spending money on engineers and servers and building out the company right now. you invested $360 million, only have $45 million in revenue and no profits, that's a tough
proposition to keep doing year after year. >> what does twitter hope lies in their future? >> frankly, a lot of people -- >> give me the names. who's running the company? who's the ceo? >> a guy named dick costello is the ceo. >> what's his background? >> he worked in it and developed a company he sold to google. ed williams and stone and jack dorsey were the three founders and kind of the technical celebrities in silicon valley. i think one possibility is the company gets sold. both facebook and google have looked at buying the company and the board decided not to sell. that could be a problem. yahoo looked to be bought by microsoft, turned down the offer and the company is not worth as much as it used to be. >> quickly, if you don't mind, you brought up yahoo. it is sort of being squeezed between google. then you have google being squeezed by facebook. everybody is chasing everybody in silicon valley.
what's the latest status on yahoo? where are they? >> they're in a tough place. they used to be a newsportal when that word was in vogue and seemed like a real business model. at this point, you have to ask what's the point of yahoo? what do they do? still have search. supposed to go there for news. but most are going to see its like msnbc and news organization sites like the "new york times." you have to ask what is the point of yahoo? do you go to yahoo? do you guys use yahoo!? you have to ask the questions and raises viability. >> they have really good horoscopes, i use it for that. >> probably good business. >> what is the story of john roberts? >> we're considering putting him on the cover next issue, you know, because it generated tremendous interest from tv news talk show hosts. >> the fact you put him on three months in a row is fairly
impressive. >> sort of like our princess diana. really works for us. >> that says something about your readers. >> the president's speech has really -- you're seeing both sides of it today in the papers. i won't read the one from the journals. the bottom line, obama's tax hike idea soaking the rich, a trendy talking point flatly absurd. here's what nicolas christophe says, raise america's taxes. he real challenge is health care inflation. nobody is certain how to do that including research which procedures work and which don't, as baby boomers age, escapism will no longer suffice. we need a frank discussion in the years ahead, since i'm not a
politician, let me be perfectly clear, raise my taxes. >> jeffrey taxes? did i say jeffrey taxes? >> you did. >> jeffrey sachs. >> we have such a broken process, it's hard to know where to start. we don't know whether we have $38 billion or $38 million according to the congressional budget office last night. don't know what's in this agreement. everybody stunned day-to-day. yesterday, the president put out new numbers and don't know what they mean compared to the numbers he put out last month, what does it mean to the baseline, to cut $4 trillion over a decade against what budget line. this process is so absurd at this point in terms of complexities and lack of any clear process or leadership, and the president's off fund-raising right now to run for re-election because we're in a constant campaign mode and almost no governance mode.
who's in charge of these negotiations? who frames them? jack luwid of office and management and budget? our country needs executive branch leadership. you can't do this by closed doors secret committee. we need a process step by step. it's breaking down actually. this isn't one side versus the other, the lack of any process that guess us anywhere right now. >> i heard your name knocked around with something called the people's budget. what is that? >> this was an idea to try to put timeline and clear numbers on the table for the next ten years in line with what the public says, cut spending. get to us out of afghanistan and iraq, stop bleeding this country. >> exactly. >> raise the taxes on the top. the public is overwhelmingly in favor of that and get the health care costs down, that's what the
congressional progressive caucus put out. they do nothing more than track the mainstream of public opinion, not the lobby directed policies but the mainstream. they put it out there. it makes sense to me. >> as far as medicare and medicaid, what do they do as to rate of growth? >> they have them slow down by mainly introducing the public option the public wanted but lobbies took off the table last year. the basic problem with the health care system, it's too high priced, too high cost and we need an alternative not just ratcheting down what we spend, that would leave people without health, we need lower cost health care delivered and what the public option aims to do and lobbies took it off the table. from virginia, bob mcdonnell will be on the show and also joe biden joins a long list of famous speech sleepers.
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53 past the hour. willie is out west. you know what's happening? >> what's out west? >> his dad is getting a star on the -- what's it called? >> bill geist. >> walk of fame. >> you get your foot on one of those. >> i amazing. cool. >> congratulations mr. geist. >> we will fill in for willie. think we can do that? >> no, you can. sorry about that. >> the president got a little media feedback on his speech yesterday from the vice president. there it is, joe biden nodding off during the president's lunchtime address. ? the lady behind him. >> tim is paying attention for all. trying to. >> yes. >> keep your eyes open. >> and the lady is asleep over his riding shoulder. >> everybody is sleeping. >> two out of three. >> the vice president is in very
good company when it comes to officials who nod off during official events, look at president clinton asleep during the late dr. king event. >> look at that. >> how about senator john mccain, he got a little nap in during the president's 2007 state of the union speech, that would be president bush. >> he's thinking. >> yeah. >> contemplating. >> president bush's second in command, vice president dick cheney slept during a cabinet meeting. i heard of that happening before. back to president obama who has inspired naps beyond the beltway to michigan. remember this high school student? this is cute, fought to stay awake during the commencement address and one point where a speech about increasing the number of troops in afghanistan had one cadet using his fellow soldier's shoulder as a pillow. they should all take lessons
from me. i never fall asleep. >> never. >> there you go. >> never. >> i'm absolutely fascinated by everything you all have to say. >> those guys keep such horrendous hours. you have to sitting through so many boring speeches, it's just -- ronald reagan famously fell asleep a good bit during the pope's speech in great britain. >> salt talks. >> mika, you are inspiring for a lot of reasons, not only do you not fall asleep. >> i thought we were going to talk about tracy morgan. >> also your standing up to me and your knocking me down. now on-air as well as off-air. you have inspired some people. >> margaret in georgia writes mika -- >> can we turn the music down? this is significant. >> i'm getting so set up. >> mika, you found your voice and made us proud. i literally jumped out of bed
with joy when you took on joe and mark halperin for the president insulting paul ryan. you were spot on. don't back down, mika. >> that's huge. i love that. you have found your voice. >> all right. be quiet. coming up, governor bob mcdonald and harold ford jr. next on "morning joe." >> we go to break. also get a free flight. you know that comes with a private island. really? no. it comes with a hat. you see, airline credit cards promise flights for 25,000 miles, but... [ man ] there's never any seats for 25,000 miles. frustrating, isn't it? but that won't happen with the capital one venture card. you can book any airline anytime. hey, i just said that. after all, isn't traveling hard enough? ow. [ male announcer ] to get the flights you want, sign up for a venture card at capitalone.com. what's in your wallet?
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this vision is less about reducing the budget deficit than changing the associate come contract with america. ronald reagan was the first that said there's nothing serious about this plan. nothing courageous about spending a trillionaires on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires and nothing wrong wiwrong -- good about asking sacrifice for those who can ask it. >> i was disappointed in the president. i was excited when we got invited to attend his speech. i thought his invitation was an olive branch. instead, what we got was a speech that was excessively partisan, dramatically inaccurate, and hopelessly inadequate to addressing our
country's fiscal challenges. >> okay. welcome back to "morning joe." top of the hour. >> i was going to say, it was a good start. >> yeah. >> what was the line in anchorman? boy, that deteriorated fast, stay classy. >> depends how you want to play it. >> in san diego. >> somebody ought to listen to that. dr. jeffrey sachs is still with us, joining the table, republican governor from virginia, bob mcdonnell. hi there, good to have you. former dution from tennessee anl analyst and visiting professor from nyu, professor howard ford. >> professor, let me ask you a question. >> professor, teach us. >> teach us. >> we need to be educated. >> you're president of the united states. if you call somebody's budget plan un-american, do you invite them to sit on the front row and then insult them as sort of your opening salvo for budget negotiations? >> i think you certainly invite
your adversaries and those who may disagree. i don't see a problem with that. >> you don't have a problem with that? >> not at all. >> you don't think that might mess up negotiations down the road, saying he's not serious. >> boehner yesterday said taxes were completely off the table. i think that's an honest negotiating starting point. you and i discussed that yesterday. i don't think anything is wrong. think it's civil. you all talk about that all the time, able to have this conversation, robust. >> okay. maybe it's just the lawyer in me. i tell you what when ever we had mediations, the two clients started to personally insult each other and saying the other wasn't serious we had to drag them in the other room. >> he didn't say paul was un-american, said the plan was un-american. >> said paul's plan was un-american and even more insulting was the fact he wasn't serious. this is "hardball" and tough. i have no problems with anything the president says about ryan or ryan says about the president's plan, saying maybe you don't invite him to sit on the front row of your speech which is a
grand gesture and then whack him. >> i probably would have done it differently. >> i know you would. on the other side, governor, let me ask you this, maybe you don't want to wade into this territory. >> i'm free to pass right away. >> if you want your ratings to stay. >> 66%, that is gaudy. that is gaudy. >> jobs for jobs. >> anyway, governor, republicans woke up this morning stunned -- >> unlike joe biden? pt. >> unlike joe biden, stunned to find out that $38 billion, $38 billion of john boehner and republican leaders promised them. >> points of interest. >> ends up the cbo says, well, actually, in the end, they only actually got $350 million from this year's budget. do you think that will make things harder for these young freshman republicans, hard core conservative toss trust leadership in the future?hink t
very small discussion, anyway. whether it was 38 or 61, it's only talking about discretionary domestic spending. it with a trillion 5 and deficit and $14 trillion national debt, it's nothing anyway. this was the very first discussion of a longer battle what does the next budget look like and what do we do about the debt ceiling in the future. regardless of the actual numbers, this was the first salvo, how do we cut spending? >> as a conservative guy, you agree with me, even though we republicans usually go after domestic discretionary spending first, there's no way we will take care of our debt problems by just going into the small sliver of the budget and tearing it to shred, in fact, it's counterproductive. >> absolutely. it's 12% of the budget. unless you have the guts to tell the american people you have to go after reducing entitlements in a fair and balanced way, we're never going to reduce this
$14 trillion i think is an unsustainable immoral level of debt on our kids. we did that in virginia, down to 2006 spending levels. we cut education, health care last year. i told the people if we don't do this, we won't be competitive and won't get out of this problem, not going to raise tax, six months later we had a surplus. i think we can do this at the national level and say, if we don't do this, we will be a long term debtor nation and sacrifice our prosperity. >> i want to get to your great record in virginia, bob for jobs, unemployment very low. i want dr. sachs to weigh in because dr. sachs believes yes, you will slow down entitlements but go after taxes. >> at the state level, you make one decision. do you think it could conceivably be right at the federal level all of this is done without any tax increases on the rich? i find that impossible
statistically. do you think it's possible? >> i do. >> you do? >> because it will take a little longer, perhaps. when you look at what governors have to do with balanced budget amendments, we think the way they're managing things in washington is foreign to our thinking. we have to balance the budget every year on time and have to do it with a limited debt ceiling under our constitution. we can't do crs every year to move things down the road. that's what americans do in their businesses and families. these crs and pushing the debt ceiling out is a foreign way of thinking to governors and the average citizen. >> at the state level, you may make one decision but at the federal level we have the rich enjoying wealth and income levels they've never seen in history. people suffering at the bottom. the idea this is going to be done just by cutting programs for the middle class and poor seems to me to be impossible. what kind of country really would it be? for a state that's competing with other states for jobs, who'
going to move where, where are you going to locate, you make a certain decision. when we're talking about the country as a whole, we've never seen the wealth at the top. we see it on wall street, record profits, yesterday, jpmorgan. is it really going to be we let the rich have more wealth, higher share of national income than they've ever had in our nation's history and walk away with that? >> jeffrey, i think we ought to celebrate that success. that's the american -- >> how do you celebrate it when 90% of people are suffering, governor. >> it's the american dream. >> for 90%, it's the american nightmare with all due respect. >> that's why we want to encourage and celebrate in america, more entrepreneurship. >> we bailed those guys out, half should be in jail. >> we bailed out the cor corporations. >> we bailed out the ceos making -- >> let's let the governor respond. >> the entrepreneurs, persons slightly over that $250,000
discretional creating 70% of the jobs in virginia and probably nationally, the small business guy, i don't see why we layer more punitive taxes on them when they're the ones creating the jobs. >> what about a million dollar? >> i'm not in favor of raising taxes at all. republicans and democrats are at fault for this debt and this deficit. it's been years and years of overpromising and underdelivering and not having the courage to be fiscally responsible the way americans run their business. now the bills are due. i think the worst thing to do is raise tax, increase the debt ceiling and continue the irresponsibility we have had the federal level. governors can't do that. >> do you see after the elections in november, obama negotiated with the republicans and extended tax cuts. a lot of democrats did not want to see him extend the cuts on the top earners. he did it in an effort to get other things passed payroll tax, s.t.a.r.t. treaty, ending "don't ask, don't tell." you have to think that was all part of it.
to jeffrey's point, i agree, i want to keep taxes low. federal governments have responsibilities where they have to fight wars and have to execute at the federal level. from a fairness standpoint, if you're trying to win votes in the senate and house, to mika and joe's points and others on the show, raising the threshold for taxing at a million dollar, if we're going to be critical, you agree with jeffrey going after corporate ceos and corporate welfare, if that's fair, is it not also fair to say to those earning $2 million and more, you have to pay a little more in taxes, keep your corporate rates at a certain level, only fair if we're asking middle class and lower class americans to pay more in taxes to give up medicare and social security to pay our debt. is that fair? >> i don't think the question is what's fair, what's good economic policy from kennedy to reagan and chris christie and i and other governors are doing, you raise taxes, you will get less economic development and
less jobs. that's why i don't support it. have the guts to cut spending, be honest about entitlements. if we don't get entitlement reform, we will never get there and be in debt a long time. >> let me ask you about tax fairness. maybe this is the way republicans and democrats can come together. we already have the two sides saying barack obama said we're going to raise taxes, republicans saying we're not. they have to meet somewhere. do we maybe go at it a like ronald reagan went it an in '86, don regan came to him as treasury secretary said, mr. president, you know the top 10 head esof corporations in america pay less than your secretary. reagan was shocked, tried to make the code more fair. >> percentage. >> now we find out everybody's secretary probably is paying more taxes than general electric, one of our parent companies. >> or warn buren buffet.
>> who brags paying 14% taxes because of all the tax lawyers and accountants and stunned at taxes this president passed even that helps millionaires and businesses, is that a way we can come together, tax fairness and close these loopholes and raise money for the government? >> i think that may be middle ground, wholesale tax restructuring to your. many evacuated flat tax and tax consumption opposed to punitive income and wealth opportunities. that may be a way to get there. that will take ta lot of guts because you will put a lot of tax accountants and lawyers out of business. >> let's hope so. bob for jobs. >> i think it's interesting what you're doing. >> bob for jobs. we commended you, thought washington -- >> you flattered me calling me elvis. that was great. >> you were elvis. at the time, you were ahead of
your time talking about jobs. >> you were just on message. others were not. >> what's the job situation right now in virginia? >> joe, that's been our top priority. getting people back to work getting them access to the american dream, taking care of their families, reducing reliance on government. we've gone to the eighth lowest in the country. we have a long way to go. 250,000 virginians out of work, still a tragedy painful for us. we've been very aggressive. i have about $100 million in the budget for new economic development programs, job creating programs, reduce tax regulation, open up trade offices in england, china, going to china in three weeks. >> you have three trips. >> and tell them why they should come an invest in virginia. >> i'm sorry, mika. >> i'm looking at your schedule, looks like your delegation is going to china in three different places and japan, bringing your agricultural secretary. >> and korea. >> being governor these days
isn't just about going to the uva maryland game and saying nasty things about the terps, it's a global job. >> and butler. i was there. >> it's a global challenge, isn't it? >> it is. i'm not just competing with maryland and tennessee and west virginia and kentucky or texas, we're competing against india, china, korea, taiwan, singapore, being very aggressive, 30ing with capitalism, attracting western capital in big numbers and lost a lot of jobs offshore and we are a right to work state, have great universities, regulatory tax and great policies. i look a ceo in the eye and say, here's why you need to come to virginia and why it's important. >> and jeffrey sachs says states compete with each other. driving through new england you look at shuttered factories from connecticut to rhode island, a
terrible situation, massachusetts, one state you didn't -- you told me also had low unemployment, new hampshire. >> yes. >> the story is they're a low tax state that brings in business from the outside. i asked bob riley one time, how do you guys get mercedes plants in alabama instead of, say, connecticut? he said, well, it's pretty easy. less taxes and a better work environment. in the end, when you're trying to attract jobs to america, is that what it comes down to, work environment? >> that's coming down to it. low taxes and low regulation, right to work laws are probably the best selling point i have in virginia, what texas and other southern states have and why they've been able to attract jobs. >> given your focus on china, do you have any thoughts on jon huntsman? >> he was a fine ambassador. i think former governors will make the best candidates for the republican nomination.
he's certainly one of them. he's not to be discounted. but it's wide open at this point. >> i don't know where that came from. you're obsessed with jon huntsman. >> i watched a profile on him. >> your disturbed with -- >> no. i watched a profile and might roll a sound bite later? >> you think he will jump in? is this, this helen reddy thing again? i'm fine with it. >> you want to go over it again. >> we have bob for jobs here. >> seriously, i'm sorry about joe. thanks for being here. >> republicans ought to look at this guy. >> i'm looking. >> look at this guy nationally. >> i'm not a republican but i'm looking. coming up, we'll take it -- excuse me, he's what? >> he's a stud in politics. look at him in washington. you're elvis. harold, somehow, you have even made us feel uncomfortable. that's not easy. >> i normally don't do that.
this is a good thing. >> it is. >> and exclusive first look at this week's cover of "time" magazine. first, she says paul ryan's budget plan is a quote death trap for seniors. congresswoman debbie wasserman-schultz will be here, former comptroller david walker will be here. we'll be right back. the 3.6-liter pentastar v6 engine in the jeep grand cherokee has a best in class driving range of more than 500 miles per tank. which means you don't have to worry about finding a gas station. which is good... because there just might not be one. people have all kinds of retirement questions. no problem. td ameritrade has all kinds of answers. call us for quick help opening your new ira.
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the majority's proposed budget for fiscal year 2012 undermines our nation's values and priorities. >> it's unconscionable and silly. >> this plan would literally be a death trap for some seniors. literally a death trap for seniors. i'm 48 years old. i've seen only one death trap for seniors? i. w it was the matlock season dvd of death. look at that death trap. >> look at that pretty shot. capitol hill in washington d.c. 21 past the hour. i know. it's amazing.
joining us now from capitol hill democratic congresswoman from florida and now the incoming chair woman of the democratic national committee, representative debbie wasserman-schultz and here in new york, former u.s. consulate general and founder and ceo of comeback america initiative, david walker. good to have you both on the show. >> congresswoman, let's start with you. we will let you respond to -- >> yourself. >> the matlock situation. and jon stewart. death trap. did you possibly overstate your case against the ryan budget? >> joe, you're a former florida member of congress. you know better than anyone that 60% of seniors in nursing homes are on medicaid. it stands to reason that if you are going after the total amount of spending on medicaid the way paul ryan's republican plan does and you dramatically cut the amount of money you're giving to states and block granting that program, it stands to reason frail elderly senior citizens in
nursing homes who are going to not be able to get into nursing homes anymore because medicaid won't be there for them will not survive. but the important thing is we need to make sure, like the president said yesterday, that we need to engage in some shared sacrifice. >> debbie, let me ask you about -- let's talk specifically about medicaid, because nobody around this table has ever suggested we are broke because the poor are getting too good a deal on health care. they're not. as i say all the time, going to an emergency room 11:00 at night, you see two americas when it comes to health care. that being said, america can't keep growing at 7% a year, impossible. talk to the most liberal democratic governors in america and they will tell you medicaid is breaking their accounts. jerry brown will tell you. what do we do? it can't grow at 7%. is 4% a sufficient number? is it 5%? where do we go here.
>> that's absolutely right. it can't. that's what the president said yesterday. for me, i'm looking at this as a mom with three young kids who is a little worried about the looming deficit we have. i'm really glad the president proposed yesterday to get a handle on medicare spending and use that independent payment advisory board and health care law to say we will slow the overall growth rate of medicare and take a look at medicaid and make sure we get rid of 50 different match rates given to every single state in the country and start to dramatically reduce their administrative costs and start ballooning and get a handle on medicaid and slow that growth rate. if we don't reach those spending cut targets, establish a debt fail safe so we can have a trigger that will automatically impose spending cuts and revenue in ceasreases so we can strike right balance. >> sort of depressing days for conservatives right now, the
president's plan not met with open arms by a lot of small government conservatives. then we found out last night this $38 billion plan, u.n. i d know if you've seen the news yet, the $38 billion budget plan ends up the cbo says only cuts $350 million this year. >> there's a difference between obligations and expenditures. i believe what the congressional budget office is saying, it's cutting $38.6 billion in obligations but all of that money was not realistically going to be spend. >> that doesn't mean it wasn't going to be spend period. >> some of it -- $7 billion wasn't going to be spent. as you know, dave, if you don't make the cuts like livingston made the recisions in 1995, they always come back the next year, next year and next year. >> that's why you need to do recisions. let's get real. they were talking about $38.6 billion out of 3$3.8 trillion.
what we need to do is we need to focus on the 88% of spending not on the table, the need for comprehensive tax reform. we need specific debt as percentage of economy targets. >> what's your number? >> what my number is we need to have an annual target that will get us down to 70% of gdp by 2020, 50% by 2035. if you hit the target, fine. if you don't, there are automatic defaults with regard to discretionary and mandatory, certain aspects of mandatory spending as well as on the tax side. heavily weighted towards spending cuts. i'd say 3-1 spending cuts but need one part revenue. >> pete peterson came out yesterday saying the president's speech was a good start. do you feel that way? do you feel that way about paul ryan's approach? >> i believe the president's speech exceeded my expectations. he put it together in a matter of days. he largely embraced the framework of the national fiscal responsibility reform
commission. >> bowles simpson. >> and took one of my recommendations, this debt to gdp target. the ryan's plan and president's plan represent an opening bid. there have to be negotiations. the real key is what are we going to do on the debt ceiling limit. i have some thoughts what we ought to do there. >> let's get to that. that opening bid, if the two sides meet in this middle, does it get us anywhere? >> it does. the fact of the matter is, congressman ryan, wants to solve the problem with spending cuts, not socially equitable and not politically feasible. on the other hand, he's right, primarily spending problem. >> harold. >> good morning congressman, harold ford. >> good morning. >> joe's point about medicaid spending growth, 7% annually and your number you talked about agreeing we ought to reduce it. that puts us at a pretty strong starting point. >> paul ryan puts it at 2%. >> you're not going to negotiate on "morning joe," no one would
ask you to, at least a willingness to 4 to 5% increase opposed to 7% increases. i would agree with david, it sounds as if the president's point was a strong point, ryan's point strong, a good starting point. if there's a willingness to come together around medicaid and medicare and agree to some growth numbers not as high as they are and not as low with ryan we're making progress. am i hearing this right or hearing it wrong? >> i think rear hearing it partially right. what the president emphasized yesterday incredibly important and dramatically different than the ryan republican plan, we need to broaden our proposal. we need to make sure our proposal to address this overall deficit is comprehensive and detailed and covers the revenue side as well as the spending cut side. what happened so often in washington is that everybody comes to the table and the only thing you can agree on is spending cuts. all the sacrifice isn't shared,
it's all piled on the backs of the most frail elderly, the people struggling in america and then you have the wealthiest asked to do nothing. to suggest in the ryan plan we reduce the overall tax rate for the wealthiest americans to 25% and ask 33 seniors each to pay $6400 more for $200,000 in tax breaks for the wealthy is crazy. >> dave. >> first, you have to recognize we need comprehensive tax reform. the top bon% of americans. >> exactly. >> who made $500,000 and over pay 18.8%. they don't pay 25 or 35. why? most of their income is capital gains. we need to dramatically broaden the tax base to keep rates low and move towards progressive consumption taxes because wealthy people spend out of their wealth not just their income. look, we're going to have to have more revenues as a percentage of the economy than we have because of dem graphics,
health care, because of long term care >> let me stop you here, this is an important point. i heard a lot of people say paul ryan wants to give the rich more tax cuts. the truth is ryan is tryi trying -- democrats -- i think the president will be there with him. it will be a bargain if we get the rate to 25% and eliminate the tax loopholes. if we can get the rich paying 25% instead of 18% or 14% like warren buffet, the federal government gets more money. >> i am for alternative minimum tax, a massive bait and switch tax. i paid a 30% to 40% surcharge on my taxes. >> incredible. >> because of that. you know why? i'm making all the money out of wages. i'm not making it out of inside build-up or 15%, you know, for -- >> we're coming. >> this is the great frustration. if you own a business and you buy a private jet this year, you
actually can make money because of the 100% depreciation plan that the president and the republicans agreed to. get this straight. if you buy a $5 million jet this year, all right? you get -- the federal government gives you 35% of $5 million. >> that's right. >> on your bill. it's written off. so the rich get richer, the tax loopholes are insane and this is why somebody that just draws a salary is getting screwed! no matter how much money you make. >> joe, what the president said yesterday is this is about fairness. in america, we don't begrudge anybody making money, we want to make sure everybody can make money. at the end of the day, there are too many people gaming the system and many are the wealthiest of americans and we need to make sure we spread things out in the tax code and make it fair and strike the right balance between spending cuts and bringing our growth rate down and health care costs and insuring everybody pays their fair share in taxes.
>> that's reasonable, is it not? come on. >> let's bring in right now, we have over at the white house, we're going to be able to talk to the director of the national economic council, jegene spurli. you've been listening. >> nice to have you. >> thank you for dropping by. you've been listening to this discussion and it seems like there may be a middle ground on tax. a lot of people don't understand why warren buffet pays 14% in taxes and people making over $500,000 spend and average of -- >> 18.8% effective tax rate. >> can we get a lot of more revenue by closing these loopholes for the wealthiest americans? >> that's one thing the bipartisan tax commission, the bowl bowles-simpson commission called for. virtually every bipartisan deficit reduction process we have seen has said we should be able to find ways we can reduce tax expenditures enough we can
both lower rates on americans, make the tax code simpler and still have enough to contribute to deficit and debt reduction. that really was the goal the president put forward yesterday we have bipartisan tax reform that lowers rates and lowers the deficit and we do so with a spirit of shared sacrifice. we can't ask americans across the board to tighten their belt and think, geez, the only reason we're tightening our belt is to afford to extend tax cuts to the most fortunate. everyone has to believe this is part of shared sacrifice to get deficit reduction to be part of an economic growth strategy to benefit all of us. >> we have dave walker with us with a question. >> hey, gene. how are you? the president talked about naming vice president biden to lead negotiations between now and june 30th. realistically the debt ceiling limit will come up no later than
that time frame. what's realistic to get done? can we agree on spending and default mechanism. you won't reach a grand bargain on everything that needs to be done to get our finances in order by june 30? >> a few points. all congressional leaders have been very clear it's inexcusable and irresponsible to think america would default or use the potential default of the united states as somehow a bargaining chip or leverage on a controversial part of the budget. i believe a constructive sense that you don't want to let the things we disagree on keep us from making any progress going forward, to show confidence that we are getting our debt down as a percentage of our income. one thing, david, you called
for, that the president endorsed and called for very specifically yesterday, was what he called the debt fail-safe, no matter what happens, we institute something that says in 2014 congress has enacted, if we haven't met our projections under any circumstances we have something automatic that will make sure we are bringing down our deficit and debt percentage of our income. that would create a lot of confidence in those who have to make decisions about when they're going to invest and where they're going to invest. we want them to invest now and in the united states. >> real quick. don't we need to go back to what president clinton did when you were in the white house and have some meaningful citizen education engagement beyond the beltway to facilitate these tough choices because the commission didn't do anything beyond the beltway. >> one thing you saw the president do yesterday in his speech was he actually said here's what we actually spend on. you can't eliminate the deficit by cutting foreign aid or npr or
anything like that. he was very clear where the money is, where our savings are and why the choices are tough. even those of us who strongly object to the type of ending medicare as we know it now or the very very deep cuts for nursing homes or people with disabilities, even those like the president, his economic team don't believe in those understand even in medicaid and medicare, you have to do some things to strengthen reform, make tough choices. >> gene, mark halperin. the decision to have the president give so few specifics on social security and where you like to see medicaid and medicare cuts. >> the president was specific in many important areas. on medicare, he made very clear he was going to have an enforcement mechanism he already had in affordable care act but would toughen it to make sure we're keeping health care costs down as we go forward. if we don't, we again will have a process that makes sure there
are recommendations that the secretary of health human services has to empliment to get our health care costs under control. we put forward these things in mind numbering detail. the important thing is they're part of an overall framework the president is trying to bring congress together on agreeing. >> unfortunately we have to leave it there. the director of the national economic council, gene sperling, thank you for dropping by and also david walker, thank you as well. >> good to be with you. >> david, what are you doing in connecticut? >> i have the comeback america initiative in bridgeport, trying to bring back america, bring back bridgeport. >> we will look at "time" magazine next. [ male announcer ] 95% of all americans
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mainly returning to normal sin the sense you can be parents again and enjoy some time with your family, while at the same time, you know, evaluating other possibilities, you know, of retirement might allow for you to continue giving back in unique ways. i don't know the answer to that yet. >> okay, we're looking for 40 past the hour. a quick look at the news. former pennsylvania senator, rick santorum taking his official step. he announced a fund-raising committee for the republican
nomination. the former fox news contributor was beaten badly in his reelection effort in 2006. he said a lot has changed since then. >> 2006 is not like 2010 or 2012, a very different election cycle one i think people have learned from the 2006 and particularly the 2008 election. in 2008, i think the american people, you know, wanted a president who they could believe in. i think after two years of that, what they've realized america needs a president that believes in them. i really think that's the fundamental issue here. mark halperin, we came in with ambassador john huntsman and listening to santorum, do either have a shot? >> they have a shot to be real players. one measure we look at how often do people go to iowa and new hampshire and south carolina, santorum has low pressuapped thn everybody else. it showed up, won straw polls.
jon huntsman, the jury is out. until he tries toe field and campaigning, i don't know. he has on paper a chance to be a real player? word is he's traveling to key states. >> he has a commencement speech set up in new hampshire and south carolina. he will get out and try. >> it not just he likes new hampshire and south carolina. >> santorum very different. talking about donald trump, serious issues, china, has that capacity to do that. he will be an interesting figure in this race if he gets in. >> i think so. a first look at the next issue of "time" magazine next. [ male announcer ] want to achieve more with your money?
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out, poor working woman because she had given him an hi fi instead of a stereo speaker. i remember everything about it. i saw a hooker approach a man in a gray flannel suit. that's pretty heavy stuff for a guy from arkansas. i still have very vivid memories of it. romantic. fascinating. >> my goodness. snow that is fascinating. >> is there the political point of bill clinton's very exact memory. >> quite a memory. >> now, "time" magazine managing editor, rick stengel here to reveal the next issue. >> fascinating. >> i love it on a lot of levels. >> we have the subject of your time cover story on our show a few weeks ago. it sfired tremendous interest. >> great. >> rob bell. tell us about it. >> it is what if there is no hell and focused on rob
evangelical preaching maybe we at all don't go to this place and don't have video what happens after we die. written by jon meacham one of the great scholars of public life in america an royaling the christian evangelical community. >> explain how it is. >> basically, we don't have any evidence hell exists, basically all the christian teaching, old testament and new testament, book of revelation talks about heaven is something people are not that comfortable with starts with this lovely antidote rob starts with in his book teaching about world religion and world peace and talking about gandhi's violent campaign and somebody said too bad gandhi is in hell. bell starts thinking about that. says what kind of religion world do we have if a man like gandhi is in hell?
he begins to think through the whole thing and his book "love wins" you talked about when he was on the show is about that idea. nobody knows better about what is going on- >> about hell than jon meacham. >> that's a different story. >> jon obviously has been fascinated with theology a very long time. is the reverse of that also true, does bell believe if there's no hell there may be no heaven? >> well, i reduce it to this carrot and stick analogy people in religion use, you know, if you don't -- in the evangelical community, if you don't accept jesus as a savior, you're not going to heaven and therefore you're going to hell. he's basically saying religion should be in this more contemplated ethical way we live our lives than this kind of carrot and stick situation. >> isn't the very center of
christianity new testament teaching, i'm sure jon talks about this, jesus says, i am the way, the truth and the life, nobody gets to the father except through me the son. how does bell get around that? how does meachem? >> not so much getting around it in the sense that scripture actually speaks with many different voices. the bible is contradictory in many different ways about things. there aren't any reporters ho have been up there and down there to say this is how it is. bell is saying how do we figure out a christian way to relate to each other in our society for a more modern world, more secular age we have holocaust and nuclear weapons. our comments with each other should be a more ethical kind of thing. >> you grew up in the church in the south as did i and always had orthodox beliefs and people always confront you with this question, was gandhi in hell?
no, they do. was gandhi in hell, zar borrza zar -- scarborough? and i say that's above my pay grade. i don't focus on gandy and other salvations but just my own. >> i think you're right but a o think that gandhi would be in heaven, that dr. king would be in heaven. i haven't read the book, i can't comment, i haven't read the article. back when evangelicals have concerns about it, i hope the conversation gets going. i can't conclude i'd be easily persuaded by this argument, but i'm interested in it. >> got to read it. speaking of fascinating arguments, donald trump is in the middle of one right now, and -- >> near hell, is that what you're saying? >> no. to run or not to run. it doesn't matter where mika and i go, i assume the same with you as well. people want to talk about trump, whether it's a big elaborate joke or whether he's about to
turn the republican party upsides down. what does "time" say? >> our white house correspondent spent time whip the donald, as he is known and basically it sucks out whether she actually running and whether he's serious about it or not or whether it's an elaborate performance art he does have every four to eight years -- >> speaking of performance art. you get this straight. a service to the readers about the donald. if somebody at home -- if a kid going to ninth grade is watching the show right now and wants to go to school with the donald, you actually have a -- >> yes. investigative reporting and service journalism. >> rick stengel, thank you. >> what if there's no hell written by jon meacham. the cover of "time."
i just want to reply on the donald trump thing. i've got the certificate. it ain't in hawaii. it was in brooklyn. come get if you want to see it. >> really? >> i got some people uptown in manhattan checking you out. and you know terrence, on 116th minute, says terrence malone to you. a little black boy with blue eyes and he's going to go like this. wrong. come see that boy, donald!
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absorption and has a delicious, buttery taste. make benecol part of your healthy lifestyle. some will argue we should not even consider ever, ever raising taxes, even if only on the wealthiest americans. it's just an article. i say it at a time when the tax burden on the wealthy is at its lowest level in half a century, the most fortunate among us can afford to pay a little more. here's the thing. i believe that most wealthy
americans would agree with me. they want to give back to their country. a country that's done so much for them. it's just washington hasn't ask them to. good morning. it's 8:00 on the east coast. we may finally get some spring weather today in the northeast as you take a live look at new york city. returning to the set, mark halperin, dr. jeffrey sachs and andy serwer. >> you know, watching the president, paul ryan on the other side. where are we in this battle? and then i go back to those great -- you're too young for this. these guys are definitely not -- those great howard cosell interviews between muhammad ali and joe frazier. we're not in the first round. we're where ali is yapping and saying he's going to do this and frazier's on the other -- i mean, it's -- right now this
is -- you talk about silly season. this is silly season and mark halperin, this is underline by shocking information that came out last night from the cbo about this budget bill that was going to save $38 billion this year? it saved 1% of that. >> maybe. >> maybe 1% of that. they're still playing with numbers, these republicans and democrats. silly season. >> when the -- when the resolution, the economics of that playing into some of these new members of congress they may not be willing to vote for this package. the 218 votes is not in hand. in terms of the overall debate and the president's finally weighing in -- >> mika, look at -- >> what we call discrepancy. >> this is why americans don't trust washington, d.c. >> there's a dismal point problem. >> 1%. this is why americans don't trust republicans and they don't
trust democrats. everybody comes out and takes victory laps, jeffrey sachs, and says we have got $38 billion. we have made the tough choices. the deficit is actually going to only be with this $300 million and we're going to be spending more this year than we spent last year. >> well, the whole thing was bizarre that they announced a deal. this historic deal, and then it took days even to find out what a line item was. had everything is done so secretly anyway, you can be pretty suspicious we're not really hearing the story and it's pretty shocking what that discrepancy is. >> yeah. it really is. and let me ask you quickly, andy, do you agree that right now you've got the republicans saying, we will never raise taxes. >> yeah. >> you can make us eat worms and dirt for the -- and then you have barack obama on the other side saying, we will raise taxes. and this is -- they're both saying it's a deal killer.
when we know they've got to meet in the middle and do a deal. >> right. it's the beginning of the political season. the budget is obviously topic a. the one thing that actually is encouraging is, we're talking about the third rail now. much more than we ever did. which is to say the entitlement programs. that's a positive. as far as republicanans saying, never raise taxes, that didn't work for the bushes. did it? >> no. >> and the president, that would be the worse thing. >> it's going to happen. >> has to happen. >> they're going to meet in the middle. i've got say, you look at the e-mails and the blogosphere and tweets last night, and -- i'm sorry, just, the blind loyalists on the right and the blind loyalists on the left saying their side is completely right. one statement i heard last night that gave me a reason to be hopeful. >> what was that? >> pete peterson a guy who's
been talking about the deficit, the debt for a long time. he said, listen, this is a good start, on both sides. like you said, we're now talking about everything. right? jeffrey, you'd agree? we're talking about everything. >> how much credit should we give ourselves for talking about everything. it's so disorganized. there hasn't been -- still today it's impossible to understand what either side is really talking about. what are the baitlines? cuts against what? the baselines. you read the president's fact sheet, i couldn't make heads or tails of this. we're going to cut this, cut this, but no lines against what are they cutting? what are the numbers? what percent of national income? >> all right. >> and you know, the debt ceiling. >> right. >> because there's going to have to be -- >> good point. you're right. >> -- have to be something done before the summer if republicans are serious and democrats saying we're not doing anything about raising the debt ceiling unless
there's substantial progress. >> and last night john boehner absolutely pummeled by the national review for this budget. a lot of the small government conservatives have said, strike one. you know. we don't know if we can trust you. i'm telling you, people, and official washington, and financial people need to understand how serious last night was. this moves us much closer to the brink on not increasing the debt limit. i'm telling you, that is -- you know, they have all of those system, orange, yellow, red, purple, violet. i don't know what the worst one is. red, maybe. if you're on a terror alert system for the debt ceiling it has just gone to red or defcon 5 because now the freshmen don't trust john boehner and the leadership and barack obama is not trusted by progressives and paul ryan was sitting on the front row when the president
attacked him. attacked him pretty hard, and that is just not what you want to do going into a crisis of this magnitude. >> all right. let's lay out what happened with the president yesterday. president obama making his case to tackle the nation's spiraling deficit. in a speech at george washington university yesterday, the president proposed chipping away at the debt with a mix of spending cuts and tax hikes. >> in the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90% of all working americans actually declined. meanwhile, the top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. that's who needs to pay less taxes? they want to give people like me a $200,000 tax cut that's paid for by asking 33 seniors each to pay $6,000 more in health costs.
that's not right. and it's not going to happen as long as i'm president. >> specifically, the president proposes cutting $4 trillion from the nation's debt over 12 years. less than his own fiscal commission recommended. three quarters of the savings would come from spending cuts and the rest from raising taxes on the nation's highest earners and reforming the tax code to close popular loopholes. the president is also calling for a $770 billion reduction in discretionary spending. $400 billion in defense spending. >> look at that number. >> yep. i see it. >> that is a significant number. more significant than secretary gates put out there. >> $700 billion a year is the annual defense budget, by the way. right? >> yep. >> and this is over -- a decade. >> exactly. >> and another care and medicai. so there you go. the full numbers. i also think what was
interesting is has he said about taxes and the highest earners and it not being right hanchts w. >> what was your take? short of specifics, general things what you did think? >> it's interesting. basically what he said a month ago had he gave the fiscal year 2012 budget, which was completely ignored. the reason that it got some traction, quite a bit of traction yesterday, is that it's against the foil of the republican plan. so the republicans came out really saying, absolutely no taxes on the top, and it makes it easy for obama to carry much of the political space. i think as usual the republicans have put themselves into a pretty bad corner that they won't really be able to get out of, because the president's right on this bake point. to say never, never, never on taxes. it's completely losing proposition, and what the rest of the budget needs first is hard to know, because we don't
see clear numbers presented. what the budget was presented a month ago, which was basically the basis for yesterday's speech, i was more than -- less than luke warm about it, i have to say. it wasn't really getting to core needs for the country. it wasn't really spelling out where the investments need to be made. it was too much military spending, because the wars were still tapering off into several years rather than getting out of afghanistan. so i thought that the money wasn't well spent, but compared to the ryan plan, the president's got a winner here. there's no question about it, for the base of the american people. >> let me ask you, mark, economics versus politics. economically, i think most people, economically, believe that if you're going -- you got $4 trillion, $5 trillion, $6 trillion in national debt, you're going to have to let the bush tax cuts expire, either for the wealthiest or for all americans, but politically. i mean, jeffrey said economically that's a loser, but
politically, is there any evidence that that's a losing proposition? tax cuts for t-- >> tax cuts for the wealthy are unpopular and over the long term -- >> let me ask you this question. why, i still don't understand why, the president didn't follow chuck schumer's advise politically and economically and say, you know what? we're going to -- $250,000 to $1 million, teep your tax cuts. for millionaires, taking yours back. >> they could have done that before the election. some democrats wanted to. the democrats up for re-election didn't want to fight about tax increases because republicans have been very effective saying now is not the time to raise taxes on the american people. they did an effective job of fussing up the politics. >> in time for the next election, i guess, because i don't see how he doesn't get this. >> i don't see wyether of you how come you couldn't make a
distinction between tax cuts, tax increases and for wealthy americans, super wealthy, we cut taxes for the super wealthy, bush tax cuts that didn't help the economy when bush was healthy, raised them when clinton was and the economy did great. a link between tax cuts and tax rates for the super wealthy in the economy, but one thing is clear is, it does have a lot to do with the deficit, because it does produce a tremendous amount of revenue. >> now, the president did get political in his speech taking a few shots at paul ryan's budget plan. take a listen. >> this vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in america. ronald reagan's only budget director said there's nothing serious or courageous about this plan. there's nothing serious about a plan that plans to reduce the deficit by spending a trillion dollars. i'm not asking those to sacrifice from those that can
least afford it and no clout on capitol hill. flats not a vision that i know. we don't expect the agreement to look exactly like the approach i laid out today. this is a democracy. it's not how things work. i'm eager to hear other ideas from all ends of the political spectrum. and though i'm sure the criticism of what i've said here today will be fierce in some corners, and my critique of the house republican approach has been strong. americans deserve and will demand that we all make an effort to bridge our differences and find common ground. >> hmm. >> mark halperin, if the president believe what's he believes, and basically paul ryan's budget shatters the social contract. >> un-american. >> and it un-american. if the president believes that, he certainly has that line, obviously. to believe that, i don't understand the tactically, why do you invite paul ryan to come sit in the speech, insult him, even though left wing bloggers
will be thrilled by it? because this is the guy you're sitting across the table at a negotiation. this -- i'm sorry. this just was not a smart political play. let him watch in his office and be insulted. don't put him on the front -- again, i'm not saying this as a republican or as a small government kevintive, i'm saying this as lawyer that negotiated time and time again, and anytime the two sides get close to insulting each other in public -- you pull them apart, because you want the deal in the end. i don't understand that. >> well, i think it's compounded by the fact that i'm not sure i agree on your first point. i think if a republican president called the democratic proposals on this un-american, i think the press would be up in arms. up in arms. i think that kind of rhetoric, for the president to say what paul ryan is going is not consistent with his vision of america, that's rhetoric that added injury to the insult of inviting him to sit in the front row. >> republicans said a lot of really, really tough things
about barack obama. really tough things. so it's not even the words. it's not the rhetoric. i think the president does believe that the ryan plan is not the america that he grew up in or the america that he wants. i'm just saying for negotiating reasons, why invite him to sit in the front row and say that his budget is not serious and it's un-american, when paul ryan's been fighting his entire life for this? >> i totally agree. seemed like a weird decision to me. >> i don't get it, because i think the republicans have said some really critical things about the president on camera without his there and that seems actually cowardly. having him in the room and looking him straight in the eye, talking to him before -- >> okay. >> that to me seems like, we have differences -- >> seriously? are you serious? >> i'm a -- >> on the front row and then insult him in front of the american people? >> no. he's not insulting him. >> he says -- it's an -- basically an un-american plan. >> vehemently on the direction of his country. >> you can say you disagree with paul ryan's plan. you cannot say paul ryan is not
a -- unless you were a left wing ideologue detached from reality. >> okay. we're going to have to -- >> let me just say, paul ryan -- i've got to say, paul ryan's plan, there are a lot of things in it that concern me. i'm not in love with that plan. i like that he put everything on the table. i'm saying as a negotiator, this doesn't seem to make sense. >> we've got to hear his reaction. >> i don't understand the calculus. maybe he just wanted to be tough and he wanted to kill the base, and say, you're going to be dealing with me. this is it. >> i think that's exactly what people have been calling for. actually. even on -- >> ensalting people. inviting people over and insulteding, in front of, that was a stupid political move, mika. you know it was a stupid political move. he was playing to his base. and actually i know this is sort of washington -- >> really? >> it's sort of backwards. >> yeah. >> but i think what's happened is, this is the president playing to his base, because he knows he's going to end up negotiating with ryan.
i just don't think it's a smart thing to do. but, i don't know. maybe. maybe we should invite people into our office and just insult them? in front of a lot of -- >> in front of the show. >> how about that? >> that would be great. let's do that. we people waging. up next, how gold man sachs came to rule the world by author william cohen who takes us behind the veil of secrecy. plus, a new hbo documentary offers an inspiring bird's-eye view of something that went right in the recovery effort. first, let's go to bill karins way check on the forecast. bill? >> mika, a lot of good and a lot of bad today. finally, a nice day from new england down through the east coast. the clouds clear out, it's going to be sunny and warm. temperatures 60 to 70 degrees from d.c., northwards to boston. the middle of the country, danger area. from kansas city to oklahoma city, tulsa, little rock, late tonight springfield, missouri,
tornadoes likely in this area, especially the red area. a moderate risk of severe storms. a tornado outbreak is possible. so stay tuned for that for more details. you're watching "morning joe" and the butch washington, d.c. and new york city morning brewed by starbucks. [ male announcer ] in the event of a collision, the smartest thing you could do is cut the fuel supply... ♪ ...unlock the doors, and turn on the hazard lights. or better yet, get a car that automatically does it for you. ♪ ♪ ♪ na, na-na, na [ men ] ♪ hey, hey, hey ♪ goodbye [ flushing ] ♪
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public. true, but the state of hawaii has once again said, mr. obama's birth certificate is on file. a certificate of lie has been released. mr. obama was born in a honolulu hospital. [ applause ] >> a tip of the yamaka to you, sir. impressive o'reilly reaction. what's he got on tomorrow night. there is no war on christmas! one of us -- one of us! >> welcome back to "morning joe." on the front page of today's "financial times," investigators butting a new spotlight on goldman sachs and the role it plays in the financial crisis saying, "goldman clearly misled clients and misled congress." with us now, contributing editor for "vanity fair" william cohen and william's out with a new
book "money and power c how goldman saks came to rule the world." thank you so much for being with us i. take it you saw the "financial times piece." >> i did. i completely read it and agree. haven't read his full report but he's on to something. i think goldman was clever about shorting the market at the same time that they continued to sell mortgage backed securities. so -- >> your book's calmed "how we came to rule the world." this didn't just happen in 2008. goldman sachs has ruled the world a very long time. >> at least 100 years, i would say. henry goldman had a seat at the twhabl the federal reserve was put together. they met in new york with cabinet secretarieses to do that. i thought i could have been listening to henry paulson and feinstein. goldman, and henry being the former and treasury secretary, could have been the two of them talking about how goldman would
tap into the fed. >> and the power is just built on itself. a lot of people look at goldman sachs and other institutions and think they get together and have secret societies. you talk to people in wall street. they tell you, these guys at goldman. >> they're good. >> they're the best. >> they're good. >> and even their allies say when you deal with them, be careful, because they are tough and they're just, in a league of their own. it sort of feeds on itself. doesn't it? >> unless there was substance behind their reputation, they wouldn't have this reputation for 100 years. they are really good. i worked on wall street for 17 years. i competed against them. i worked on the same deals with them. they are really, really good, but, you know, the interesting thing is that they have been able to sustain that over a long time. even despite some 6 their p.r. nicks they're now facing. >> they're good, but when they got into trouble they had the treasury stlect to bail them out. when the markets were turning, they were doing these unsavory
deals. so how good is that? >> well, there's no question that goldman sachs wouldn't be here today if hank paulson, ben bernanke and tim geithner had not bailed out the whole financial system. not just goldman sachs. >> but they moved to save goldman, actually. >> well -- you know, that's the ultimate example of darwinian capitalism. if goldman fails, the collapse of the system we have come to know and love. >> i don't think everybody loves it. >> they don't, but it is the grease that allows capitalism to function. the ability to put california anywhere in the world where it's needed, the primary function of wall street once upon a time, now it's more like a casino. without that primary function, companies can't get the capital they need to grow. >> what kind of capital is it when you get in trouble, you gamble, you're taken home to -- given bonuses and then is bailed
out. then we say how good they are. we have to keep perspective. this wasn't so good. they got this country, the world into a lot of trouble. >> i totally agree with you. >> and there's no accountability yet i. want to make sure for everybody that's watching right now, when we say good, i mean, they are very talented, very brilliant. >> define good. >> but you look at what happened a couple of years ago, obviously, and the whole market's a mess and it has been turned into a casino. where you talk about how they're betting against and sometimes like everybody on wall street interests of their own clients. >> they're very, very good. talk about defining good. they're very, very "good" at making money. goldman sachs the perfect embodymented of a money-making machine. they're geared to do it, do it day in and day out. they take every part of information including the squeal to make money from it. that's what they are designed to do. and it's a brilliant darwinian capitalistic machine if that's what you like, what it's all
about. >> and are people victimized in the process? >> of course. there's always a winner and loser in every trade. for goldman to bet against the mortgage market and make money as they did, there have to be people who bet on the mortgage market and lost money. >> goldman i take it is not alone in doing that? >> no. well, they were alone in making -- this is important. they were alone in making this big bet against the mortgage market. paulson, hedge fund manager who made billions and goldman sachs. the two made a major -- in 2006 and 2008. everybody on the long side, lost their shirt and goldman sachs and john paulson. >> not just a bet. peddling assets they knew -- and i want to ask you, why doesn't anyone call out john paulson who teamed up with goldman to sell assets they knew were bad to the german banks? why doesn't anyone call out the hedge fund guys? >> look, jeffrey, that was what the subject of the sec lawsuit was a year ago. the so-called abacus
transaction. if you parch through all the documents, i've read all this. the truth of the matter is, a willy buyer and willing seller. john paulson was willingly constructing, and the german and dutch banks on the buy side of the transaction. nobody forced them into this. goldman was -- >> if you have a willing buyer when you had john paulson purposefully constructing these devices that he knew were going to fail. >> he didn't -- >> if i sell something to you and i'm selling it with a hope that it fails and i know that the way this system works is more than likely it's going to fail, have i not committed fraud, selling you a financial document, or instrument? >> joe, you packaged it to fail. >> packaged it to. >> you bet that it will fail. >> you had -- >> look, i think -- i don't know. i late to be in this position of having to defend this crazy thing called the synthetic ceo.
i hate to be -- >> not a good position to be in. we really don't understand. try to. >> say you want to buy a share of ge, which, you know, the minority shareholder. >> right. >> somebody's going to sell you that share of ge. so that person selling it to you thinks ge's going to go down. you think ge's going go up. there's no difference in construction of this crazy security. >> general electric, though, is not created to fail. some of these synthetic -- >> no, but we're -- you know -- >> destined to fail because -- >> no. look, i'm not -- again, i'm in a tough position here, but i'm not disagreeing. why our society has come to synthetic ceos. the truth of matter is, john paulson could have been wrong. we wouldn't be sitting here today talking about john paulson if he were wrong. he would be in a obliterated hedge fund. >> for some reason the mortgage market sustained itself. you never know how that's going to go. depends on supply and demand.
it did seem like he was expecting it to fail. let me ask you something quickly, mark, about washington and goldman and then, please, dive into it with william, because it's one of the fascinating things. like, for instance, aig. bailing out aig in effect is bailing out goldman sachs. it took us a couple of months to figure that out. i remember back in '95 right after i got up there, you know, everybody was say, we've got to bail out the mexican peso? why do we need a mexican bailout? it took me a decade to figure out, because goldman sachs was heavily invested in mexico and if mexico -- >> and bob ruben the treasury secretary. >> it took me ten years even though i was there debating it on the floor. to figure it wasn't a bailout of mexico. it was a bailout of goldman sachs. how does that work? >> suspenders. too big to fail, plus several treasury secretaries, the white house chief of staff and lots of influence in washington.
>> tell me, how does that happen? it's that's the underlying question. why does goldman have a monopoly in this positions at least since bob ruben? >> smart guys. almost all guys and like occasionally going down to washington and serving in the government. it serves the interests of the company quite well. >> you put your finger on it exactly. it was that bill clinton took the democrats and wall street and made that merger, and that was the key political act, and that continues with the obama administration. that's the -- just like big oil is to republican party, wall street is to the democrats. and that was bill clinton's creation. that's the inside job, and it's still there. >> okay. what happens with the culture of goldman, a book like yours and all this, are they changing at all? >> do they care? >> reform -- >> i don't think they want to change. i think they're being dragged to some change. i mean, i think the p.r. has been -- they've had a blessed run of beautiful p.r. for about 100 years.
the last two years has not been so good and i think they're struggling in how to deal with it, number one. obviously, the law now and regulations written around it are going to change the way they make money a little bit. maybe they'll be more utility-like, maybe fuel, right now, incredible september 22, 2008, gold man sachs and morgan stanley became -- security structure went away. now back up to the fed, take our money in effect and use that to make big bets to make profits when we are now subsidizing the gozman sachs business plan. if anyone would have predicted that would be the outcome of this financial crisis, even dr. sachs couldn't have predicted that. incredible outcome nobody would have -- >> absolutely. >> what we saw with the story about our, i guess, half parent company, ge and the tax situation being held in other countries so they could get around a loophole. tell everyone to look at it. it's legal. is it legal? the question is what was legal and how far does this go?
they're looking into a possible criminal investigation. is that getting close to a bull's eye here? >> there's no question that senator levin has had this bee in his bonnet about goldman sachs for over a year. >> it's another thing to have evidence. >> according to the -- look, for you to make this big bet against the mortgage market at the same time that you're continuing to sell these mortgage securities to your investors and clients, that raises serious ethical moral questions. >> so let's back up a second as the music comes in. if i'm a shareholder of gold man sachs and let's say -- no. say they didn't make that bet against the mortgage market. >> look like lehman brothers. >> the collapse is -- as i walk in, i say, wait a second. you -- there was no insurance against this? you didn't bet against this position? >> even senator d-- >> even senator levin gives goldman sachs for having
excellent risk management. only gold man sachs made this bet and -- then they should be -- complimented for that. >> the people watching saying this is fraudulent. at the same time, again if they hadn't have engaged in this sort of risk management, people like you and me would be saying, they're idiots. >> that's right. >> how could they have bet it all on condos in south florida and vegas? >> the irony, they would rather look stupid in front of senator levin's committee. >> than criminal. >> than criminal or really smart. the truth is, they were really smart in making this betsying the collapse coming and betting against it. >> let's -- >> the truth isn't always -- >> let's say, for instance, that dr. sachs and halperin decide to start this new social network and it's going to be the biggest thing ever, but they've got to jump through hoops and raise $30 billion. if they want the best where are they going to go? >> goldman sachs. and they don't really care what anybody is saying on tv or in the newspapers. >> they want their money. >> bottom line, goldman sachs
can do the deal better than anybody else. >> and been doing it about 100 years that way. they're good. and that's why they're like the yankees. you know? people love to hate them. >> good. okay. >> in quote marks, jeffrey. >> what good is good? >> however you define good on wall street. >> this has been fascinating and -- you're good. the book is -- "money and power c how goldman sachs came to rule the world." thank you so much. up next, business before the bell with erin burnett.
welcome back to "morning joe." look at that. rockefeller plaza and the sun shining over new york city. new weekly job numbers to look at. let's go straight to the new york stock exchange with cnbc's erin burnett. >> good morning. >> she's an international superstar. erin, what's the word? >> okay. here is where we are. a couple key pieces of data. first jobs. the continuing claims are still solid, but last week actually worse than expected. increase in people filing for unemployment and back above that level we watched carefully, 400,000 at 412. that number, several in a row, four in a row, better than expected. a hiccup for last week i would say. producer prices out.
look the at year, year over year, biggest jump since august of 2009. so we are seeing pressures there. the question, how much of them, those pressures are actually going to pass through, that remains the big question. the fed, you know, remains unconcerned and believing there's a transitory but watching closely. >> jeffrey, should we are concerned about inflation? >> absolutely. because commodities prices soared. fuel prices, food prices, oil prices, coal prices. against tight supplies and crucial commodities. >> erin if inflation takes off it's a rocket ship. isn't it? it could explode very quickly? >> yes. it could. again, the whole question is, when it goes into -- ben bernanke has his reasons and a lot of people disagree believing it's transitory. over time historically changing in food and fuel are volatile and they don't tend to bleed through. if they do bleed through, you're
right. it would become difficult. he believes wages have to also be going up in order to be a wage price spiral and that traditionally is what sparks inflation, becomes a big issue. we don't have wage price inflation right now at all. joe, we do have a white iphone coming in in a month. i wanted to get that in there. >> that's huge. >> why iphone. getting a white iphone difficult technically, apparently sorted out. >> fantastic. >> thank you. >> thank you, erin. >> i can sleep well tonight. is the market going up today? >> no. at least not at the open! >> well, at least the sun's out. thank you, erin burnett. >> see you later. >> international superstar. up next, a new hbo documentary on something done right during the gulf oil spill. what would that be? keep it right here on "morning joe." [ cricket chirping ]
there's some countries that believe you should just kill these animals and don't care for them. generally they don't want to put the time and money and effort towards it. populations are made from individuals. if you start looking at individuals as not important, then the population becomes unimportance. it doesn't mean everybody has to wash a bird. it means that everybody in their liar support it, because it's just like when someone gets lhut on the street, you take him into the hospital or whatever. it's a human life, and it deserves care and respect and we're saying the same thing. >> 44 past the hour. a clip from "saving pelican 895." an hbo documentary about the grueling efforts to save one bird rescued from the bp oil spill. and here with us now, director of the film, irene taylor brodsky. welcome.
>> i understand you premiered this at the pensacola theater. >> indeed we did. >> that is big. >> yeah. >> tell us about the film and what the response is from the people along the gulf coast that participated in this and also the tragedy of the past year? >> yeah, well, we decide to follow just one bird, and the bird basically was a way for us to focus all of the -- all of the spill and the coverage of the spill. so we found taking it back to the gulf coast, we were just in pensacola. we're going to be going to baton rouge next, we really are hoping to take it back to the gulf and realized in pensacola, it's kind of a film wab heabout hearing fe people. it was hard for folks in florida to wait for the oil to come in and folks in louisiana dealing with it head-on. >> a great position to take pap producer, and i'm not surprised this is so well done, but tell us the story behind this one
bird. >> 895 was the 895th bird captured off the coast of louisiana. before then, 894. after him 896. that's his name because that's where he came in the order of things. he was the first bird we filmed being captured, and he was captured by a biologist also featured in the film named mike carlos, central to the whole wildlife venture down in louisiana. the film follows him and this bird through this entire rehabilitation. >> and the twists and turns and challenges of making that happen, how much of an effort and what does it tell us about the totality of the disaster in the gulf? >> well, as filmmaker i think i had to really remind myself that i would stick with this bird whether he lived or died, because if he lived, that was one kind of message, and if he died, that was another kind of message, and both messages were critically important.
and i'm not going to give away the ending, but certainly following the bird through every step of his rehabilitation was very tricky. accesses, it was impossible at times and every time he went to a new pen or to a new part of his rehabilitation or changed facilit facilities, a new set of hoops i had to jump through to get permission. >> what kind of cooperation did you get or need from the government and bp to get this done? >> i needed cooperation from fish and wildlife, from the state agency. the louisiana department of wildlife and fisheries. i needed, really, cooperation from bp as well, because they were overseeing the whole rehabilitation process, because, of course, they were paying for it. >> uh-huh. >> and bp also was stiff on -- >> you don't want to give away the end, but didn't they all have a big stake in the outcome? >> they sure did. >> how did that manifest itself in you're dealing with them? is it possible your bird got a little extra better treatment?
>> you know, i think every single bird was treated equally. i really can say that. i mean, as journalist, i kept trying to ask the rehabilitator some of the big, tough questions about oil and energy, and they didn't really want to talk about it. not because they weren't interested, but because i think every day they got up in the morning. they just focused on that bird in front of them and frankly, if they did think about the big questions they couldn't have come to work. >> what entity, what organization or person was the toughest to deal with covering this story? >> i wouldn't say one entity. it was more having to collaborate with so many at once and sometimes i felt like it was deliberately confusing. they were deliberately confusing me, because i didn't know who really had final say. who really could give us permission. so that was tough. but we had the support of the louisiana department of wildlife and fisheries, which really helped us, and we had support of the ivrc that runs the rehab.
so those two groups really helped us push through. >> let's look more generally at this. we're coming up on the year anniversary. which i'm sure why hbo is putting this out. year anniversary next week of this spill. a year later, what are your thoughts as director of the american institute? >> well, i think the main thing is we find we have no good choices right now. this was bp oil drilling. then we had the nuclear disaster. then we had a report the couple days ago everybody's favorite now would be gas shale. that that's also very dangerous, because the amount of methane released into the atmosphere. so where we are in terms of the overall problem, how do we balance energy and the environment, make things safe? we have a mess and we don't have answers right now. we don't have any really great choices, actually. >> amish have it right. go back to -- horse and carriage. >> they do. >> i mean -- the trade-offs between getting the energy to
run the globe versus what it does to environment, it seems like there are no good choices. >> it just comes back to you a the things we talk about. unless we are a lot more serious not just reacting to crisis after krasz, but tcrisis, think true choices we end up bouncing back and forth. >> irene taylor brotsky, thank you. it airs next wednesday, april 20, 9:00 eastern time an pacific on hbo. watch it. >> that's the one-year anniversary, right? >> the best of late night, next. how can expedia save me even more on my hotel?
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unless we are a lot more serious >> that's the one-year the president spoke at 1:30 in the afternoon. champion apparently is right in the middle of the vice president's nap time. remember how everybody used to get when obama spoke. biden might be dead. i mean, he -- i don't even know in that's a woman. having a sex dream. be quiet. oh. he's up. he woke up. then went right back to sleep. >> when i started i thought he was probably born in this country and now i have a much bigger doubt than i did before. i have people studying it and
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it's why i teach. ♪ i know they can, even when they think they can't. were back. time to talk about what we learned to. >> willie geist, absent on the program. >> getting the star. bill geisst. >> we're going to london. and -- >> going to talk about austerity. >> yes. that's what i'm hoping we cover. yeah. >> and football. >> maybe fashion of acetatorust. yeah. why not. >> and i learned the budget issue isn't exactly over. i t